Blog Archives

Peach State says: What’s Cooking?

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The only thing on my mind this morning has been what to cook for dinner. I have already planned dinner yet my tummy just won’t stop the continuous rumble. “I guess it would have been a good thing if I had eaten a little more last night for dinner!”

What’s Cooking?

I’m glad you asked! The plentiful bounty of shrimp, pictured above, is one of my favorite! My cousin made this dish for me and…it is so easy!

Shrimp Bake:
1-2 pounds of medium/large uncooked shrimp
Italian dressing
2-3 lemons cut in half
Flat bottomed dish

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Place the shrimp in the bottom of the dish
Squeeze the lemons over every shrimp and place the lemon half pulp down into the dish
Pour your favorite Italian dressing over the shrimp. ( I have used light versions of Italian and Caesar and they are just as good!)
Bake until the shell of the shrimp turns that rich reddish/pink color.

Peel and enjoy!
I serve these scrumptious shrimp with a nice salad and favorite bread!

Need something easier…maybe for a football gathering?

Taco Loco:

20140121-110809.jpgI cannot wait to try this! We typically enjoy a good taco night every week! I do recommend using the larger tortilla shells and offering a variety of fillers. Beef/chicken, cheeses, vegies, refried beans, salsas, sour cream. OR:cubed fruit, custard, chocolate drizzle…well I know you are hungry now!

How about Individual Pizzas?:

20140121-111355.jpgQuick and easy…and LIGHT! Pizza sauce or BBQ sauce…cheeses…vegies…whatever you choose!

Well it is time for me to start my dinner! I am trying a new product…

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I will let you know how it is…and whether my hubby liked it or not!

Enjoy these recipes and remember…SHARE!

“May your cup runneth over with joy, love and laughter oh, and really fabulous coffee!”

Peach State

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Peach State says: Party Time Recipes

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Anyone thinking about a rich-yummy-tidbit-of-chocolate with a cup of coffee? Have I got something to share with you! I have a few recipes, that I recently found, you will love…and that are relatively easy. With the 4th of July coming up you may need a few tasty ideas for those parties and Bar-B-Ques! Here we go…

“Party Time Recipes”

Let’s start with the “Chunky Chocolate Coffee Cups:

(Before going any further…I made a batch without coffee and they were just as tasty!)

Preheat oven to 375F
Coat(spray) 36 mini muffin cups with cooking spray…after placing them in a mini muffin tin…

In a large bowl 1 tsp instant espresso/coffee in 1 Tbs of water. (I used 1Tbs of a shot of espresso)
Add 1 package of Betty Crocker double chocolate chunk cookie mix
1egg
3 Tbs of oil
Stir until a soft dough forms

Place 1″ balls into coated mini muffin cups and bake 8-9 minutes or until set.
Make an invention on the top of each and let cool.

Now you can serve these delectable treats as they come out of the oven or continue with the next steps…

Combine 1 can of vanilla frosting
2 Tbs caramel liqueur of cold coffee
Once blended add 1/2 cup of marshmallow creme into the icing mixture.

Spoon frosting onto each little cup of deliciousness and store in the fridge. Before serving drizzle caramel syrup over the cups with a fork. Makes 36 servings

The next one was to die-for! It is great with vegies or crackers!

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My Favorite Onion Dip:
This one may sound complicated but it is far from it…just a few steps to follow.

2 Tbs EVOO ( translation..Extra Virgin Olive Oil)
2 cups of chopped green onion
1 medium minced red onion
1 tsp Thyme
1 8 ounce package of cream cheese ( I used a fat-free version)
1 cup plain 2% Greek yogurt ( less is more and I chose a fat-free version)

Heat the EVOO in a skillet and add the green onions and Thyme
Lower heat and stir until the onions begin to brown
Place the green onions and Thyme on a paper towel and dab the excess oil

…you can mince the red onion while cooking the green onion and Thyme…

Meanwhile…combine the creme cheese and yogurt and red onion
Once combined add the cooled green onion and Thyme and stir.

It can be made up to 2 days ahead of time!

Both of these recipes were recently used and inhaled enjoyed by all. You should really try them…I know I will be preparing these for our celebration coming up!

I hope you enjoy these…

Have a great day!

Peach State

Peach State says: Sort, Clip and Place

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I made the big mistake or sorting though pages of un-cut coupons and recipes this morning.
Whew…Boy am I glad that is done. I checked the dates of expiration on the coupons and placed them in a pile as I separated the coupons from the recipes I want to try. I found a few gift ideas mixed in and have put them away for another day. Yes…it was a great morning to “Sort, Clip and Place” my money saving treasure trove of coupons.

The only thing left for me to do is put the recipes with my cookbooks. I will sort them into seasonal and holiday recipes first…

I guess we all do what we can to save those precious pennies when spending our hard-earned-don’t-have-enough money.

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Well it has been fun…but now I must complete the task laying before me. If you love to clip and save let me know. If you have any cost-cutting techniques…please share! Have a great day!

Peach State (alias…The Frugal Fruit!) “Well I am very frugal and fruity if I am wearing a particular lip gloss…

Peach State says: Memorial Day Recipes

20120526-080314.jpg Memorial Day is Monday and most people will have a long weekend to remember and celebrate with family and friends. Our little family has always celebrated quietly together on Sunday…”My husband does not usually have the entire weekend off and will be working Monday!” We will venture out, together, and see a movie (Men In Black 3) and then return home for our cookout. The menu has been planned and the food has been bought. Here are a few of my new Memorial Day Recipes!

Hamburgers with the standard lettuce, tomato, and pickle toppers are the main course with Grilled Corn on the Cob and a Bacon and Ranch Pasta Salad.

Bacon and Ranch Pasta Salad
Small Shells cooked and cooled
Peas
1 small diced onion
10 cooked slices of bacon…crumbled
Ranch Dressing…pour over the above ingredients and mix. I don’t use a lot just enough to flavor!
Chill!

Dessert this year will be a layered Angel Food Cake with berries!

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I will be making my angel food cake today but a store bought cake can be used.

Layered Patriotic Dessert
Angel Food Cake…cut into bite sized pieces
Strawberries…sliced
Blueberries
Whipped topping

Starting with the cake begin to layer…
Cake, Blueberries, Strawberries, whipped topping and repeat…
Place the whipped topping on top and sprinkle with decorative toppings or a few berries!

Something new to our menu is a icy drink…I saw this in a store ad and have included the recipe.
(other brands may be used)

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I will share a wonderful tip with you…most meat and seafood departments use a wonderful type of ice in their displays. You can take a cooler to them and they will fill it…FREE! I will be doing this today…it is much easier to use in blended ice drinks. “Can you say Mocha Frapps?”

I know this may seem like a average cookout dinner…but there will only be four of us this year. I hope you try one or all of these recipes…if you do…please let me know what you think of these Memorial Day Recipes! For those of you celebrating Memorial Day…Please take a moment to remember those who have fallen while serving and those who are presently serving. Have a great day!

Peach State

Peach State say: Pampered Recipes

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I have two wonderful recipes to share. Let’s start with:

BBQ Chicken Pizza
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 small skinless, boneless chicken breast half
1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp. barbecue sauce
1 (11-inch) pizza crust (14 oz. package)
1/2 cup grated smoked Gouda
1/2 cup grated mozzarella
3 tablespoons sliced red onion
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
Preparation

Warm oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add chicken and cook, turning once, 5 to 6 minutes per side, until just cooked through. Transfer to a cutting board. When cool enough to handle, cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Toss chicken with 2 Tbsp. barbecue sauce in a bowl.
Position a rack in bottom of oven and preheat to 450°F. Place pizza crust on a large baking sheet and spread with remaining 1/2 cup barbecue sauce. Sprinkle with half of both cheeses, arrange chicken on top, and then add remaining cheese and onion.
Bake until cheese is melted and golden brown, 20 minutes. Let rest for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with cilantro, cut into slices and serve hot.

How about Chicken Piccata Pasta:

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I will share two desserts tomorrow! Just in case you are going to spend time with family tomorrow…Happy Mother’s Day to those of you who are Mothers! I have to finish the Dump Cake for my family so I will close now. Enjoy the rest of your day!

Peach State

Peach State says: Visiting with Friends

20120512-073537.jpgI must admit my excitement about today’s activity. It has been a very long time since I participated in a home cooking party. I was invited a few weeks ago and quickly RSVP’ed. I love the gadgets and recipes but most of all I will spend my morning Visiting With Friends!

If you have ever been to a home party like this you know there is food, drawings, demonstrations and lots of giggling. The recipes are creative and offer a different presentation of family favorites.

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This is a Taco Ring and is one of the standard recipes for most Cooking Type Parties.
Preparation and presentation…chop, chop, chop and slice, slice, slice. They show you the gadgets they used and how to use them…”If you want your dish to look like this you will buy this gadget!” I am also aware that some will have to buy them and others, like me, have ways of chopping and slicing already available at home.

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The only thing I do not have from the above picture is the cute little square dishes. “Which I do not need because I have cute little square dishes already…”

As for the recipes…well there will be several I am sure I will want to try at home. I will make sure I pass those along to you later today!

As for the few minutes I have before getting ready to leave…Coffee! I will finish my coffee and enjoy the sound of the rain while I play a game of cards. I will then straighten up the kitchen and move the laundry before heading upstairs. “A friend is coming over to ride with me, to a mutual friend’s house, for the party and I do not want her walking in and seeing a dirty kitchen…Do I?”

Do you like going to parties like this? Do you enjoy the tasting and demonstrations or do you just like Visiting With Friends? I will have a special time this morning and will tell you all about the party and recipes later…until then…Have a great day!

Peach State

Peach State says: It’s Time for a Little Light Cooking!

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Here we are…at the first of the month and the beginning of a different season. It is time to leave behind the heavier comfort foods of the winter and bring out the lighter recipes!
I was cleaning up the kitchen first thing this morning because of the grocery shopping later today. I got a little side tracked and began sorting through my recipes and doing a little menu planning. It’s Time for a Little Light Cooking!

Sauces and Dressings add so much to a meal and help me keep dinner different.
Some of my favorite Sauces and Dressings are:

Broccoli Yogurt Sauce
I use this sauce over a Cajun Pan Fried Chicken…(see picture above) My family loves this recipe! I serve with Asparagus and Bruschetta topped English Muffins.

Whisk together 3/4 cup of water, 3/4 cup of plain Greek or regular Yogurt, and 1 packet of Broccoli Cheese soup mix in a small saucepan. Bring to a slow boil on medium heat. Simmer for 2-3 minutes.
(green chilis may be added for extra kick)

Homemade Balsamic Dressing
This recipe can be altered to different recipes! This is the basic one my family uses.

1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1tsp minced garlic
1tsp Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/2 cup Olive oil (I use extra virgin)
1/4 tsp salt( I use a light salt or Sea Salt…and only half of this amount…to taste)
1/4 tsp white pepper (regular pepper may be used)

Lime juice can be added to this recipe as well as Mandarin Orange syrup or juice…separately of course!

I use this dressing over my Pulled Bar-B-Que Chicken Salad! I boil the chicken until tender…and then pull and shred it. I then add bar-b-que sauce to the chicken. The chicken will be placed on top of the salad. This is a huge main course salad with tomatoes and Mozzarella Cheese and pretty much anything you like on a salad. I make fried onions to garnish the salad by coating sliced red onions in flour and Cajun seasoning and frying until lightly brown.

Light Lime Dressing
I love salads…it’s probably a good thing because of my dieting! With all of the fresh tomatoes and herbs I have growing on the deck…this recipe will be a great addition.
This recipe is for an individual serving!

2Tbls Olive Oil
1 whole lime…squeezed(pulp is good!)
Add Vinegar to your desired consistency
Italian seasonings
Fresh diced mint
Salt to taste

Orange Sauce
This is a new one for basting chicken. I love to roast chickens and this sauce is very easy!

1/4 cup orange marmalade
1/4 cup reduced sodium chicken broth
Cook over medium heat until the marmalade melts…set aside

Pat the chicken dry and season with Italian seasonings and salt and pepper…half way through your cooking time baste the chicken with 1/3 of the Orange Sauce and continue roasting. I serve with rice accented with the remaining Orange Sauce and Green Beans…and a lovely salad!

Well I have some coupons to gather…and need to complete my menu planning …after all…It’s Time for a Little Light Cooking!

What are some of your favorite spring and summer menus? Please share…I do love to try new things…on my family! Have a great day!

Peach State

Peach State says: Cookbook Dilemma

The announcement was placed in the bulletin and I found my mind beginning to wander instantly. What recipes would I submit to this endeavor? My Cookbook Dilemma!

I have mentioned before…I love to cook! I have shared several recipes on my blog and gotten good feedback both in comments and in person. Should I include main courses or desserts or maybe one of each? Choices…choices! Maybe I will let my readers decide while I finish my coffee!

Choices:

Cajun Beans and Rice
Chicken Enchiladas
Hash brown Casserole
Shrimp and Peppers
BarBQue Chicken Salad

Chocolate Chip Cranberry Cookies
Lemon Blueberry Poundcake
Amazing Coconut Pie
Dump Cake

Well what do you think? Please let me know which dish has made your mouth water…which one would you want to see in a cookbook? I will get the recipes posted for the favorites tomorrow! Make sure you vote or at least comment on the ones you want to see!
I will be very grateful for any assistance in solving my Cookbook Dilemma!

Peach State

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Peach State says: Boy do I have a Recipe for you!

Dinner is served!

I often get phone calls from friends while I am fixing dinner.  They hear the chopping or blending and their interests is peaked.  “What are you making for dinner?”  “I don’t know what to have for dinner.” or “What is something I could make quickly?”

“Boy do I have a Recipe for you!”

I have crock-pot meals that take about 20 minutes to put together and then they cook all day so they are ready for you at dinner time.  I have wonderful ways to prepare ground beef that makes you forget you had ground beef the night before.  I have changed the method of preparation for fancy meals and side dishes so that the cook has time to relax.  The shortcuts in the kitchen are a specialty that I enjoy on a daily basis.  No more cutting up potatoes and carrots for Beef Stew….use the canned carrots and those wonderful, already cut up, potatoes in the freezer section.  I do, however, still make the gravy the old-fashioned way….it is the best!

“Boy do I have a Recipe for you!”

Some of these changes were natural due to the items now available in the store.  Most of the changes were due to being diagnosed with Diabetes a few years ago.  I will not eat food unless it looks and tastes good… “Will you?”  Some of the recipes given to me by the doctor’s office and those websites online for Diabetes and dieting looked awful or did not fit my specifications.  Before I go any further I need to tell you that I did lose a lot of weight.  I cut, to the core, my intake of carbs and sugars.  “I really need to start that back up!”  The Weight Watchers Diabetes food was higher in sugars and carbs for my standards and there were “Mushrooms”.  I hate “Mushrooms”!  I took from the recipes my mom had been using for her Diabetes and adapted them to fit my needs.  I had to prepare food that my family would eat.  For example:  The are having hamburgers and fries….I will have a patty with a salad…now I will have 8-10 sweet potato fries instead of the salad.  I cut my portions down as well and often had a growling stomach after dinner.  I counted and used the smallest dishes for my food.  I found a recipe for fudge and altered it so that I could have some.  I must have had about two pounds during that first Christmas and when I went to the doctor he noticed my blood  sugar was normal and weight was down.  I told him about the fudge and he wanted to know my recipe.

“Boy do I have a Recipe for you!”

MY FUDGE

Fat Free Sweetened Condensed Milk (1 small can)

Chocolate Chips (3 cups)

vanilla (1 TBS)

Place the sweetened condensed milk in a microwave bowl with the chocolate chips and microwave for 1 minute and stir. Place the bowl back in the microwave for an additional 30 seconds to a minute until smooth.  Stir in the vanilla and place in flat square dish and chill.  Cut to the desired bite sized morsel.  Makes two pounds.

I have two friends that read this blog who love my fudge and “OOOPS”…the cat is out of the bag.  “I told them it was easy!”  I have recently started baking pies and cakes to sale and have been asked about those recipes.  “Let me think about that for a moment.”  If I give you my recipe then you will be able to make your own and I will be out of a job.  I have one friend that recently ordered a Red Velvet Cake (Three layer) for her husband.  She asked me about my recipe and with all of my grinning and evading of the question she suddenly assumed that I used a mix…..I quickly told her “NO!”  and told her that if I gave it to her she would not need my baking talents anymore.  She laughed and said “You still make the best fudge!”  She realizes that time is a big factor for her and that, with small children, it would not be an option for her at this time to bake a 3-layer Red Velvet Cake.  “Maybe I will give her the recipe later.”

I loved watching my mother and father cook.  My dad was not afraid to try new things or try to duplicate a dish he enjoyed at a restaurant. My grandmother, on my dad’s side, had cookbooks with notes on her changes for many of the recipes.  “I have one of those books.”  She was a cook who would throw this and that in and stir and add this and that and flavor…”MMMM! That’ll do”.  She had a favorite recipe for dessert called a Jelly-roll and had the process down to a science.  “I always wondered if it was a Jelly-roll then where was the jelly.”  She used a marshmallow cream filling in the center of the dark chocolate cake.  It was soooo rich!  “I’ll stick with my fudge.”

I have found myself in a role of the nurturing older friend who helps the younger friend who does not cook.  She is another who would ask me how I cook my dinner.  Her main concern is time.  “I will use Wednesday as an example.”  Wednesdays are complicated because so many of my friends, and I, have church and choir practice.  My youngest child gets off the bus at 3:55 every afternoon. I am heading to church at 5:15….”Plan ahead!”  Crock pot meals are great for this day.  I can prepare the meal in the morning and as they say on the “Infomercial” Fix it and Forget it.  Dinner is 99% done when my youngest walks in the door on Wednesdays.  I will jump in the shower and then eat a little before heading out the door.  I have two other sons who go to another church on Wednesdays and they have to be there by 6….Everyone eats and there is time to clean up before charging off to our different churches. My favorite, and easiest, Wednesday night recipe is:

Crock Pot Enchiladas

Tortilla Shells

Meat of your choice (I usually make Chicken Enchiladas and canned chicken can be used.  Prepare your meat by par-boiling the chicken and pulling it apart or browning your ground beef)

Cheese (Grated in bags)

Enchilada Sauce (2 standard cans)

Layer, in Lasagna style, beginning with Tortilla Shell and fill the crock pot.  I start with shell, meat, shell cheese, sauce, shell, meat…..you see the pattern.  Place the top Tortilla shell on top and cover with cheese.  Pour the remaining Enchilada sauce on top.  Cover and let cook for at least 4 hours.

Black beans, corn, or refried beans are great additions to this dish.  Serve with a spoon full of Sour Cream and garnish with Green Onions. You can serve it with a salad and cornbread.

Easy clean up is also part of this meal especially when using paper plates.

Now I will go about my day…secure in the fact that someone out there will benefit from these two recipes.  If you have a great Crock pot recipe please send it my way….I am always in the market for easy and tasty meals…”Who isn’t?”

Have a great day!

D.L.